Friday, February 28, 2014

new favorite accessory...





some girls go shopping for the perfect accessory and come back with cute shoes, make up or clothes, but i found the coolest band-aids and they are adorable.


saw these at the pharmacy the other night and had to have them!  they are so cute and i love the old time mickey mouse.  almost worth getting a paper cut just to use them.



Thursday, February 27, 2014

vermont cemeteries...






i love to take pictures of cemeteries while traveling.  here is my latest while traveling through vermont last weekend.  this is my first picture of a cemetery covered in snow...

the headstones are made from local granite in vermont.  and yes...it was just as cold and eery as it looks.

Wednesday, February 19, 2014

the white buffalo...

my sister in law introduced me to this band about a year ago and i instantly loved their sound, they also had a song on our favorite tv show (breaking bad).

the white buffalo, "the pilot"


Monday, February 17, 2014

white chocolate bark...

we just threw my sister her bridal shower and the theme was tropical.  as a favor i made tropical white chocolate bark.  it was simple and really good.  you can get really creative with barks, so here is what i did:

ingredients:



14 oz of white chocolate chips
1 1/2 cup macademia nuts
1 cup dried diced pineapple
1/2 cup dried cranberries
1/2 cup dried mango
1/4 cup dried and candied ginger








 
how to:

prep all of your dried fruit first.  i found the best way to cut the dried fruit was with kitchen shears.  melt your chocolate either in a double broiler or in the microwave.  poor your melted chocolate onto a silicon baking mat (or wax paper) and spread into a thin layer.  sprinkle all of your tropical goodies onto the chocolate and let set up for an hour or you can speed this up by putting in the fridge.  break into pieces and enjoy!


i got clear plastic candy bags and put 3-4 pieces in each, trying them off with colorful ribbon and a drink umbrella. 

 

i was lucky to find a shell shaped serving dish at my office, which is perfect to display them in.  these tropical bark favors should be a sweet ending to a lovely bridal shower.

Saturday, February 15, 2014

advice?

a smart woman once told when life gets overwhelming tell yourself "EGBOK", this stands for "everythings gonna be OK".  if i was to tell my younger self some advice, i would say "don't worry!"


Friday, February 14, 2014

happy valentines day...

happy valentine's day to my amazing husband, who is my rock and who rocks my world.  i love you.


Thursday, February 13, 2014

vitamins...

i take a variety of vitamins everyday, but a new one i started about 6 months ago is oil of evening primrose.  my doctor recommended it to me to help treat PMS symptoms (bloating, cramping and overall pain and swelling).  it is also known to help with skin conditions such as acne and eczema.


this oil is extracted from the evening primrose plant, a wildflower found in north america.  what makes it special is its high level of essential fatty acid, also known as "omega 6".  this fatty acid is crucial for healthy joint function and reducing inflammation.  oil of evening primrose may also have positive effects on hot flashes, heart disease, lowering cholesterol, and helping with fatigue.  i buy it at trader joes and take twice a day. 

Wednesday, February 12, 2014

apple cider vinegar...

i have been trying a lot of new natural health remedies as part of my new years resolution, and one very easy one to do is incorporate apple cider vinegar into your diet.  i have read the braggs book cover to cover and supposedly this stuff is a cure all for everything.  from digestion to skin problems to weight management drinking some apple cider vinegar everyday has got you covered!

a couple of things to remember is to make sure you buy the unfiltered kind (not the clear heinz brand stuff that is used for cleaning).  the vinegar will look cloudy and that is the good stuff because it has the mother enzyme in it.  and the best way to get it down is to mix 1 teaspoon of vinegar and 1 teaspoon of raw organic honey into a glass of water, and try to do it 3 times a day. it is worth a few extra dollars to go to your farmers market to get local honey, this can help with allergies as well.

my grandmother swears by it and says it is her fountain of youth, so it must be good!?!?!?

Tuesday, February 11, 2014

blue velvet cupcakes...

a while back, jarad had a caterer at work who brought in blue velvet cupcakes.  i had never heard of such a thing, but i had to try them.  unfortunately the bakery was too far away, so i decided to find my own recipe.  i made them and to me they looked like moldy cupcakes, but jarad and our friends went crazy over them.  now a few years later, i need to make cupcakes for a birthday party and i am going to give these another shot.

ingredients: 

1 box of white cake mix
1 1/4 cup buttermilk
1/3 cup vegetable oil
3 eggs
1 T unsweetened coco powder
plenty of blue food coloring

mix all ingredients and cook batter in cupcake tin at 325 degrees for approximately 18-20 minutes.


i did a basic cream cheese frosting to top them off.  i have tried a few different recipes for cream cheese frosting and this one by far was the best!  the key to any baking with cream cheese is to make sure it is at room temperature. 


frosting ingredients:

1 stick unsalted butter  at room temperature
8 oz softened cream cheese2
2 cups powdered sugar
1 t vanilla extract


i cut out some pictures and taped them to toothpicks for a fun surprise.  these blue velvet cupcakes were a hit and super delicious. 

Sunday, February 2, 2014

reused and repurposed...

i usually try to go to my favorite grocery store (trader joes) right when it opens to avoid crowds, and i always see them placing several shopping carts filled with produce and bakery items for people to take.  these items usually don't appear to have gone bad, but have a short shelf life left, so they give them away.  as i went shopping yesterday, they had a bunch of flowers out and i took 4 bunches of them (tulips, gladiolas, and hydrangeas).  when i brought them home there were a couple of bad stems, but most of the flowers just needed some water and are on display on my table.


then i had 2 beautiful bunches of blue hydrangeas that would go well with my friends living room decor, so i delivered the rest to her.


flowers always seem to make a house a home, and the bargain hunter in me was thrilled to find this steal!  and i think it also counts as a good deed to give a friend flowers to brighten their day.  all over win win for everyone!